20 Festive Family days out in the North East

Please note, this post features days out for 2015. If you'd like some ideas for this year, please check out this post:-  Our top recommendations for Christmas in the North East 2016 or visit my dedicated Christmas blog here:  www.NorthEastChristmas.co.uk

The list of places you can take your children over Christmas seems to grow every year. I know this can be expensive (check out our 10 free festive days out if money is tight) and it is difficult to choose just one or two places to visit over the festive season. This year we are using our English Heritage pass to watch a performance of A Christmas Carol at Belsay Hall, will be visiting the North Shields Christmas Market, are attending A Christmas Tale at Alnwick Garden and hopefully squeezing some ice skating in at life if the budget will stretch. Oh and we will definitely be heading to The Botanist's Winter Wonderland for a mug of mulled wine whilst out shopping too. 

20 Festive Family days out in the North East

Skating at Life

Get your skates in with the outdoor ice rink at Times Square
14th November - 21st February
From £5.50


Discover the sights, sounds and tastes of a truly traditional Christmas
Various Day and Night experiences
14th November - 24th December
From £5.25 (half price weekday visit)

Fenwick Window and Discovery Museum

Visit the famous Fenwick window on Northumberland Street followed by the Fenwick Unwrapped exhibition at the Discovery Museum
Until 10th January (museum)

Breakfast with Santa at Cafe Azure

Enjoy breakfast with Santa Claus and receive a gift in the Azure Winter Wonderland
Various dates 28th November - 24th December
£6.99 per child

Santa's Christmas Cracker at Whitehouse Farm

HO HO HO A magical time of year at Whitehouse Farm with Santa, elves, a winter wonderland and more
19th November - 24th December
From £8.50

A Christmas Carol at Belsay Hall

Scrooge meets the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future in this family friendly performance
5th & 6th December at 11am, 1pm and 3pm
FREE for members or from £5 for non-members. Under 5's are free

A Winter Wonderland at The Botanist

Festive menus, mulled wine and warm cider plus live music make the Botanist the perfect place to dine with your family this Christmas
From 19th November
3 course festive lunch £22.50

Snowman at The Sage

A live orchestra will be performing alongside the classic film plus an interactive rendition of "We're going on a bear hunt'
22nd - 24th December
From £18

Festive Friday Beer Garden at Gibside

Wrap up to enjoy carols, warm drinks and roast chestnut in the North East's largest beer garden
4th, 11th and 18th December 6pm-9pm
Free entry, drinks and food are chargeable

Winter at Rising Sun Park

Lots to celebrate including a traditional woodland grotto, Rising Sun Christmas lunches, Carols and Crafts
Various times and Costs. Most events should be pre-booked.

A Christmas Tale at Alnwick Garden

An after dark tour of the garden featuring illuminations, projections, performances and music bringing the sleeping forest to life. 
18th-23rd December
From £7 (Under 4's free)

North Shields Victorian Christmas Market

With children's entertainment, carol singing in the bandstand, food and gifts plus traditional fairground rides, this is a market for the whole family.
12th-13th December
Free entry

The North Pole Express

Jump aboard the traditional North Pole Express at Tanfield Railway. Enjoy a train ride, hot drinks and mince pies before visiting Santa Claus at the North Pole
28th November - 24th December

Father Christmas by Twilight at Wallington Hall

Visit Wallington after dark and meet Father Christmas in his cosy Grotto.
4th & 18th December. Must be pre-booked
From £9

Catch a festive show

There are lots of pantomines and festive shows to choose from including Snow White at Whitley Bay Playhouse and Aladdin at Tyne Theatre. 
Various dates and costs 

Watch Home Alone at Tyneside Cinema

There's nothing like watching Home Alone to get you in the festive spirit. Catch a special showing at Tyneside Cinema.
Saturday 19th December 10:30am
All tickets £4 (pre-booking recommended)

Afternoon tea with the Snow Sisters at Lumley Castle

A magical delight for any frozen fan with Afternoon tea, meet and greet with Elsa and Anna, Sing-along games and disco.
Monday 28th December 3pm
From £15.50 (must be pre-booked)

Santa Cruise along the river Tyne

Cruise along the Tyne with a festive quiz, children's activities, mulled wine, mince pies and disco
12th, 13th, 19th & 20th December
From £10

Christmas with Durham Cathedral Choir

A candlelit concert with carols and seasonal music
12th December at 7:30pm
From £8

Christmas Live at Metro Radio Arena

A festive bumper pop party with Olly Murs, Lunchmoney Lewis, Dappy and more
7th December at 6:45pm
From £25

It goes without saying that you should check exact details and if you need to pre-book before setting out to any of these events as everything is subject to change.

Has anything caught your eye? I'd love to hear about your festive plans this year and even better if you'd like to write about them for us (get in touch vis email samantharickelton@googlemail.com)



  1. Love the idea of watching Home Alone☺
    Know it's not local but Stockeld park is amazing.
    Where is the link about the owls? Couldn't see it x

    1. Hi Jane,

      Not sure if you have maybe clicked on the wrong post (or I have posted the wrong link somewhere?) Do you mean the owls delivering letters to Santa? All the info is here:- http://www.northeastfamilyfun.co.uk/2015/11/rothbury-christmas-festival-5th-and-6th.html

  2. Some great ideas here. I have never been to the North Shields Christmas market so must try and go this year


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